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Mobile Phone Market Dynamics – PRimage ponder …

Thursday, June 7th, 2012

Having read a news report today on a report that claims Mobiles ‘will outnumber people in five years’, Judy Viitanen pondered on this, thinking that they probably already do in some countries. However, PRimage feel it may be a while before smartphones outnumber dumbphones!  We were interested to discover more … and as ever, the US is the barometer for latest trends.

So PRimage found a press report on new data from ComScore –  our favourite source of digital business analytics – which shows that for the three-month average period ending in April, 234 million Americans age 13 and older used mobile devices.

The study surveyed more than 30,000 U.S. mobile subscribers and found Samsung to be the top handset manufacturer overall with 25.9 percent market share. Google Android continued to grow its share in the U.S. smartphone market, accounting for 50.8 percent of smartphone subscribers, while Apple captured 31.4 percent.

Apple continued to grow its share in the OEM market, ranking third with 14.4 percent (up 1.6 percentage points), followed by Motorola with 12.5 percent and HTC with 6.0 percent.

Top Mobile OEMs
3 Month Avg. Ending Apr. 2012 vs. 3 Month Avg. Ending Jan. 2012
Total U.S. Mobile Subscribers (Smartphone & Non-Smartphone) Ages 13+
Source: comScore MobiLens
Share (%) of Mobile Subscribers
Jan-12 Apr-12 Point Change
Total Mobile Subscribers 100.0% 100.0% N/A
Samsung 25.4% 25.9% 0.5
LG 19.7% 19.2% -0.5
Apple 12.8% 14.4% 1.6
Motorola 13.2% 12.5% -0.7
HTC 6.4% 6.0% -0.4

Smartphone Platform Market Share

More than 107 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones during the three months ending in April, up 6 percent versus January. Google Android ranked as the top smartphone platform with 50.8 percent market share (up 2.2 percentage points). Apple’s share of the smartphone market increased 1.9 percentage points to 31.4 percent. RIM ranked third with 11.6 percent share, followed by Microsoft (4.0 percent) and Symbian (1.3 percent).

Top Smartphone Platforms
3 Month Avg. Ending Apr. 2012 vs. 3 Month Avg. Ending Jan. 2012
Total U.S. Smartphone Subscribers Ages 13+
Source: comScore MobiLens
Share (%) of Smartphone Subscribers
Jan-12 Apr-12 Point Change
Total Smartphone Subscribers 100.0% 100.0% N/A
Google 48.6% 50.8% 2.2
Apple 29.5% 31.4% 1.9
RIM 15.2% 11.6% -3.6
Microsoft 4.4% 4.0% -0.4
Symbian 1.5% 1.3% -0.2

Mobile Content Usage

In April, 74.1 percent of U.S. mobile subscribers used text messaging on their mobile device. Downloaded applications were used by 50.2 percent of subscribers (up 1.6 percentage points), while browsers were used by 49.0 percent (up 0.5 percentage points). Accessing of social networking sites or blogs increased 0.3 percentage points to 36.0 percent of mobile subscribers. Game-playing was done by 33.1 percent of the mobile audience (up 1.3 percentage points), while 25.8 percent listened to music on their phones (up 1.3 percentage points).

Mobile Content Usage
3 Month Avg. Ending Apr. 2012 vs. 3 Month Avg. Ending Jan. 2012
Total U.S. Mobile Subscribers (Smartphone & Non-Smartphone) Ages 13+
Source: comScore MobiLens
Share (%) of Mobile Subscribers
Jan-12 Apr-12 Point Change
Total Mobile Subscribers 100.0% 100.0% N/A
Sent text message to another phone 74.6% 74.1% -0.5
Used downloaded apps 48.6% 50.2% 1.6
Used browser 48.5% 49.0% 0.5
Accessed social networking site or blog 35.7% 36.0% 0.3
Played Games 31.8% 33.1% 1.3
Listened to music on mobile phone 24.5% 25.8% 1.3

Insights Into US Social Media – PRimage comment

Thursday, June 7th, 2012

As avid followers of the quirks and trends in the social media arena, PRimage found this recent information fascinating!

Judy Viitanen hopes you  find these  stats from Edison Research interesting … they show social media in the US is still evolving in ways you might find surprising.

1. Twitter users are 33% more likely to be Democrats

An interesting finding: 40% of Twitter users are Democrats, compared to 30% of the U.S. population overall. The percentage of Republications and Independents on Twitter mirrors the U.S. average almost precisely.

2. The “Check-in” is the phenomenon that never happened

74% of Americans are unfamiliar with the concept of checking in to a location via mobile device, and only 3% have ever checked in. Even more damning, is that 4% had checked in when surveyed in 2011. This is a 25% decrease in check in behaviors in a single year. It’s not going to rebound, which is why Foursquare’s play is to be the new Yelp.

3. Only 33% of Americans have ever followed a brand in social media

From 2010 to 2012 the percentage of Americans following any brand on a social network has gone from 16% to 33%. This is a sharp increase, but looked at from the opposite perspective, it’s shocking to me that 2/3 of Americans using social networks have never followed a brand. Companies still have substantial room for growth in connecting with customers and fans on social networks.

4. 56% of Americans have a profile on a social networking site

This is up from 52% just last year, and 48% in 2010. How high can this climb? Certainly, there are sizable chunks of the populace that will never join a social networking site, but it’s amazing to consider that significantly more Americans (12 years old and up) have a social networking profile than do not.


5. 55% of Americans 45-54 have a profile on a social networking site

It’s not just for kids any more. The biggest growth of any age cohort from 2011 to 2012 was 45-54 year olds, who now exhibit participation matching the U.S. average. The only group that is below average are 55+ Americans, and even 3 out of 10 of them are in the social networking game.

6. 22% of Americans use social networking sites several times per day

It really is a “Social Habit”. In the past year, 12 million more Americans are using social networking many times daily. How many other things do we do several times per day? It’s not a long list.

7. Huge uptick in Facebook’s influence on purchase

Last year, 68% of Americans using social networks said that none of those networks had an influence on their buying decisions. This year, just 36% said that there was no influence. Now, 47% say Facebook has the greatest impact on purchase behavior(compared to just 24% in 2011). Incidentally, Twitter ranks below “other” at 5%. If you want to drive purchase behaviors within social networks, Facebook is the one and only game to play, statistically speaking.

8. Facebook via mobile continues to be a major factor

54% of Facebook members have used the social network via a phone, and 33% use a phone as their primary way to access Facebook. This despite the fact that the Facebook mobile experience and mobile apps are mediocre, at best. Here’s hoping the Instagram guys can jump start it. If so, watch for these numbers to soar.

9. Facebook is the most addicting of the social networks

23% of Facebook’s users check their account five or more times EVERY DAY. The mean number of daily look-ins by Facebook users is 4. Are we really so interesting that we have to keep up with our friends’ inanities every 90 minutes? Evidently, yes.

10. Twitter will have an easier time making changes to its core service that Facebook does.

53% of Twitter users have been a member for less than a year, compared to just 19% for Facebook. This means that Twitter’s user base doesn’t have long-term, deep seated expectations for what Twitter is or should be. It will be interesting to see if Twitter doubles down on this advantage, and continues to hang ornaments on the functionality Christmas tree.

11. 76% of Twitter users now post status updates

This is one of the biggest behavioral changes of the past two years. In 2010, the Social Habit research found that just 47% of Twitter users actually sent tweets, with more than half the user base in listen-only mode. The overwhelming majority of new Twitter users are active tweeters, driving the overall average to 76%.

Mid-week Motivator – PRimage agree!

Wednesday, April 11th, 2012

Positive advice! And an approach that PRimage and Judy Viitanen adopt ….

SOCIAL MEDIA NEWS BYTES – PRimage share

Wednesday, April 11th, 2012

Mid-week news snippets that have caught our attention ….

  • Facebook IPO May 16?

The long-awaited Facebook IPO could go live as early as May 16, according to reports on CNBC’s “Fast Money Halftime Report” that Facebook will launch a road show to back its IPO either May 7 or 14, and the company’s “plan A” is to begin trading either May 16 or 17, a Wednesday and Thursday, with “plan B” moving that date back to pricing the stock Thursday, May 24, and beginning trading the following day. According to CNBC, Facebook is committed to going public before Memorial Day, Monday, May 2.

·         Spotify launches web buttons

Embeddable “play buttons” are being offered to bloggers and others by Spotify to help sign up new subscribers.

  • Smart devices attract new readers

Increased penetration of smartphones and tablets has been a bright spot for news organizations facing readership declines. Research shows that US consumers are reading news across platforms, but also suggests that they’re not yet being driven to news sites specifically by social media.

  • Adult females prime audience for American Online Video advertisers

US consumers in their prime parenting and business career years make up the greatest percentage of online video viewers. Not surprisingly, they are also the most desired target audience among US online video advertisers—but they are not the consumers most likely to view ads in full.

Is social media in your budget? “It should be!” – says PRimage

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012

In her work as a PR consultant and social media strategist, that’s the advice that PRimage managing director, Judy Viitanen, gives to clients and associates.

Social media allows companies to interact directly with customers – and create buzz!

http://www.emarketer.com/Article.aspx?R=1008951&ecid=a6506033675d47f881651943c21c5ed4

Playtex Tonique Contour Bra – Perfect for curvy ladies says PRimage!

Monday, April 9th, 2012

PRimage love the newly launched Tonique Contour bra from Playtex: it has all the comfort of a wireless bra, yet with the uplift of a push-up bra – and makes your décolletage delicious!  The secret lies in the Tonique Contour’s ‘Flexi-Support’ panel — a discreet curve of plastic which sits under the breast to give support and enhance shape. For many curvy women the comfortable moulded shape will be a real winner! That’s the verdict from Judy Viitanen – she has modelled the new-style bra and says: ‘It is definitely the best fitting and supportive bra I have ever worn. It boosts my curves and gives me a super silhouette – and it’s so comfortable. I absolutely love it!

http://www.womanandhome.com/fashion-advice/531090/this-bra-makes-us-feel-younger

HOUSING – PRimage NEWS BYTES

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

Here at PRimage we regularly monitor the trending topics in the housing sector – in the UK and across the pond.  Some recent news and stats that have caught our attention ….

In the States there is a lot of debate on ownership versus rental …. It seems that in 71 percent of the cities in the U.S., owning is now currently cheaper than renting.

In 2011, 1.4 million new households entered the rental market due to foreclosures and demographics — i.e., the 80 million members of Gen Y are at their prime time for starting new careers, getting married and having kids. At the same time, the number of new homes being built has dropped substantially. As a result, the demand for rental properties has skyrocketed.

Bank of America is launching a pilot program that will allow homeowners at risk of foreclosure to hand over deeds to their houses and sign leases that will let them rent the houses back from the bank at a market rate.

A survey released earlier this month from the National Apartment Association and Houston-based J Turner Research gives multifamily owners insight into an important demographic: college students.

http://multifamilyexecutive.com/student-housing/naa–j-turner-survey-gives-multifamily-owners-insight-into-college-age-demographic.aspx

Good view on life ….. PRimage like this!

Monday, March 26th, 2012

Budget Basics – The Budget 2012: Changes That Will Affect You

Wednesday, March 21st, 2012

So …. After all the speculation and hype, George Osborne has finally revealed all. The draw down of Afghan operations has given the Chancellor a £2.4bn bonus.

Tax
Income Tax
  • Personal allowance will rise by an extra £1,100 in April 2013 in addition to the increase to £8,105 already scheduled for this April.
  • This means you’ll be able to earn £9,205 before you pay any tax.
  • The 50% ‘high earner’ tax rate will be lowered to 45% from April 2013.
National Insurance
  • The plan to merge Income Tax & National Insurance is still likely to go ahead.
Tax for pensioners
  • The age-related additional personal allowance will be phased out to leave a single personal allowance that applies to all.
  • This will be rolled out from April 2013 and, according to Osborne, no one receiving a pension will lose out because of it.
VAT
  • Loopholes in the VAT system will be closed to reduce tax avoidance.
  • The current VAT exemptions on food, children’s clothes, books and newspapers will not be affected.
Tax statements
  • Personal tax statements will be sent to all taxpayers.
  • These will set out your average tax rate for the year, how much tax and NI you’ve paid in total and how this has funded both public spending and public debt.
Corporation tax
  • Corporation tax will be cut by 1% today in addition to the 1% reduction scheduled for April – together this will take the UK rate of corporation tax to 24%.
  • Two further cuts are scheduled for next year so by 2014 UK corporation tax will be reduced to 22%.
  • To ensure these cuts don’t benefit the banks the bank levy rate will be increased to 0.105% next January.
Other tax
  • Capital gains tax on residential properties owned by companies will be introduced.
  • A cap on tax relief for high earners will be introduced in April 2013. This means anyone that claims upwards of £50,000 in tax relief will be limited to receive a maximum of 25% of their income.
  • A general tax avoidance rule will be introduced to tackle tax evasion, details of which will be set out next year.
Benefits
Child benefit
  • The child benefit cut for higher rate tax payers will stay but changes have been made.
  • Those earning less than £50,000 will get to keep child benefit.
  • Those earning more than £50,000 will have their child benefit payments reduced by 1% for every £100 they earn over the £50k threshold.
  • Those earning more than £60,000 will not receive child benefit payments.
Housing
Affordable housing
  • The Get Britain Building scheme that extends funding to companies that build new houses will be upgraded to encourage affordable property development.
Stamp duty
  • Individual-owned residential properties worth over £2 million will be liable for 7% stamp duty.
  • The stamp duty rate will increase to 15% for residential properties that are bought by a company.
  • The government will investigate retrospective stamp duty charges for residential properties already owned by companies.
Armed forces
  • An extra £100 million will be used to improve accommodation for those in the armed forces.
  • Members of the armed forces serving overseas will also benefit from 100% council tax relief.
  • This will be funded by a £2.4 billion saving on the cost of operations in Afghanistan.
Planning permission
  • Next week the government will publish an overhaul of planning regulations that should make applications for planning permission far simpler.
Alcohol & Tobacco
Alcohol
  • There will be no change to taxation on alcohol.
Tobacco
  • Duty on all tobacco products will rise by 5% above inflation at 6pm tonight.
  • This will increase the cost of an ‘average’ pack of cigarettes by 37p.
Transport
Fuel
  • There will be no additional changes to fuel duty.
  • The Fair Fuel Stabiliser will still apply so fuel duty will go down when the cost of fuel rises and increase when fuel prices fall.
Road tax
  • Vehicle Excise Duty will increase by inflation only.
Trains
  • Rail links to the North of England will be improved.
  • The London underground and train network will be extended.
Flights
  • Additional airports may be built in the South East of England.
Employment & Education
Employment
  • Local authorities will be given the flexibility to introduce local pay rates for civil servants whose pay freezes end this year.
  • This is to bring public sector pay in line with wages available in the private sector.
  • There will be investment in manufacturing with the aim of doubling UK exports.
  • New Enterprise Zones will be introduced in Scotland, Wales and Ireland.
Education
  • A scheme that extends Enterprise Loans to young people to start and grow their own businesses will be piloted later this year.
Pensions
State pension
  • A single rate, contribution-based pension that pays a minimum of £140 will be introduced for future pensioners in the next Parliament.
  • Plans for an automatic review of the state pension age will be published this summer.
Entertainment
Sunday trading
  • Sunday trading laws will be relaxed for eight consecutive Sundays from 22nd July to coincide with the Olympics.
Broadband
  • Ultrafast broadband will be rolled out in 10 of the UK’s biggest cities.
  • A number of smaller cities will also benefit from ultrafast broadband speeds.
  • Improvements will be made to broadband connection speeds in rural areas.
Entertainment industry
  • UK companies that produce video games, animation or high end TV programmes will be eligible for tax relief.
  • A new gambling duty on games machines will be introduced.

Social networks rocking all over the world in 2012! PRimage comment

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

New forecasts suggest that 1 out of every 5 people in the world will logon to a social network at least once a month. Those 1.43bn social network users represent an increase of 19.2% over last year. Think that’s something? By 2014, the forecast is that it will be 1 in 4. America is way out in front, but since almost everyone in America already has a Facebook account, other countries have a chance of catching up.

Check out India with nearly 50% of the US number. And Brazil with their 45.4 million Facebook users.